West Africa is under attack from international criminal networks that are using the subregion as a key global hub for the distribution, wholesale, and increased production of illicit drugs. Most drug trade in West Africa involves cocaine sold in Europe, although heroin is also trafficked to the United States, and the subregion is becoming an export base for amphetamines and their precursors, mainly for East Asian markets and, increasingly, the United States. The most important of these criminal networks are drug trafficking organizations (DTOs) from Latin America primarily from Colombia, Venezuela, and Mexico partnering with West African criminals. These criminals, particularly Nigerians and Ghanaians, have been involved in the global drug trade for several decades, first with cannabis and later with heroin. The problem has worsened to the point that these networks represent an existential threat to the viability of already fragile states in West Africa as independent, rule of law based entities. As part of this new Latin America- West Africa criminal nexus, Guinea-Bissau is generally recognized as a narco-state where state-capture by traffickers has already occurred. There is also increasingly strong evidence linking terrorist organizations or state sponsors of terrorism to the West Africa drug trade, including Colombia s Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), Hezbollah (allied with elements in the Lebanese diaspora), Venezuela, and Iran. These criminal and terrorist groups are also a threat to U.S. national security, because the illicit profits earned by Latin American drug cartels operating in West Africa strengthen the same criminal elements that traffic drugs to North America, and the same North African and Middle Eastern terrorist groups and nations that target the United States.